Building and Construction

The Backhoe of the Future

15 March 2017

The John Deere Fixstern backhoe. Image credit: John DeereThe John Deere Fixstern backhoe. Image credit: John DeereThe basic backhoe has been re-engineered by BMW Group subsidiary Designworks in collaboration with John Deere by application of BMW’s “Fixstern” design process. The concept leverages emerging materials and technology innovations, such as a lightweight metal matrixed exoskeleton and a hybrid powertrain, to dramatically reconfigure the traditional backhoe machine form.

The R&D approach sought to arrive at a robust machine with reduced environmental impact and weight, enhanced equipment versatility, and lower manufacturing costs. Features include a suspended hybrid powertrain for lighter weight and greater efficiency, a lower center of gravity for greater stability and visibility, forward stabilizers, and an extended wheelbase with airless radial tires.

Integrated augmented interfaces are intended to enhance operation and real-time training, allow for increased communication between operator and project supervisor for efficiency and control, and incorporate predictive maintenance for decreased downtime and improved fleet management.

To contact the author of this article, email engineering360editors@ieeeglobalspec.com


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